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Giant Argentine Cactus

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Capturing the Colors of a Desert Spring

Discovering blooms and beauty through the eye of a camera

The arrival of spring means it is time to begin my annual treasure hunt to find and photograph the new season of beautiful buds, blossoms and blooms!

Each year I anxiously wait and watch until I spot the first daffodils or crocuses peeking out of the ground. In early spring when the dull browns and grays of winter make room for colorful pops of bright yellows, purples and pinks, my camera and I come out of hibernation along with the emerging flowers.   

In southern Utah we enjoy nature’s display of spring flowers for almost six months of the year. The show often begins around mid-February in the lower elevations with flowering trees and cool temperature blooms, and ends in July with a grand finale of glorious wildflower meadows in the higher elevations. During these months our beautiful deserts and mountains display an amazing variety of brilliant buds and blooms of all colors, sizes, and shapes, with some that are only found in our own little corner of the world.  

Flower photography is fun and rewarding because the subject matter is always colorful and cheerful, and because no experience or fancy cameras are needed! If you are a budding photographer, choose a lightly overcast day with no wind and no harsh shadows to begin your own treasure hunt. For the most impact, fill the frame by getting as close to the subject flower as your camera or mobile phone will focus. Then check the edges of the frame and recompose to eliminate any distracting objects. Also, look for an unusual point of view, or maybe photograph only a small part of the flower for a unique and interesting composition.      

On the opposite and following page are a few of the many beautiful blooms that may be found and photographed in southern Utah. 

Now, it's your turn to explore and enjoy your photography quest this spring!

  • Bear Claw Poppy
  • Giant Argentine Cactus
  • Siler Pincushion Cactus
  • Pink Pear Cactus
  • Sego Lily
  • Yellow Pear Cactus
  • Lavendar Bush Penstemon
  • Little Sunflower